Updated: Apr 13, 2019
Lance knew his place. He was the second prince of Altea. The Son of Alfor. The younger brother to the fierce Crown Princess Allura. He knew where he fit in. The titles that sat on his shoulders may not all be something he'd been comfortable with. But he bore them all the same, because despite all the responsibility that came with Lance's family, he loved them.
There was only one position he cherished, the Blue Paladin. Blue was his. And he would never give her up. He adored letting himself slide into her essence, feeling her purring warmth envelop him, lapse at him like waves of the seas.
The day he was chosen by Blue was possibly the best day of Lance’s entire life. He couldn't stop smiling every time he thought of how she had turned to him, how only he had been able to cross her force field. The moment his hand had found her smooth surface had been a burst of awareness in his mind. He'd been told how the Lions were basically gods whose feet happened to touch the ground. But he can't say he ever believed it till he felt Blue thumbing though him, filling him with love and comfort and support.
Blue was all Lance had ever wanted past that point.
But if becoming a Paladin was the best day of his life--now, sitting here across from his sister, in the grand council room, was possibly the worst.
"No." Lance blurted.
Allure shifted in her seat. "Lance," she said as warmly as his sister had ever tried to manage.
"It's not that simple."
Lances brow creased. But it was.
His expression must have prompted a response because his sister was sitting up straighter, her face smoothing and mouth posed in a way she knew made her look cold. Lance always wondered if his sister really was cold under that Queenly cloak she pulled around her at times like this, or if she was just much better at doing her duties than Lance was.
"Lance." Her voice had more resounding tone to it now. She was dipping into an Alpha command. But she never would go there, at least not with Lance. "We need this."
"I'm the Blue Paladin." Lance argued. "The royal family has always had a paladin you said, and I'm right here, I am one."
"Yes but--" Allure pressed her lips into a hard line. "We both know Shiro's choosing was unexpected."
That was the understatement of the century. When Alfor had released his Bayard back to Black officially passing on the mantle, Allura had stepped forward--
Lance could still feel the uncomfortable silence that had filled the courtyard when Black had stepped over Allure and bowed at the feet of a nameless, bloodless captain. Allura's face had looked so shocked, so broken, so in disbelief. Lance wasn't sure he'd ever seen his sister that taken by surprise in his whole life.
The only one in the crowd that hadn't been shocked was the captain himself. With a regal nature so natural, the Captain of the guard stepped forward, crossing the barrier with ease and accepted the Bayard of the Black Paladin.
That one moment had changed everything.
"The Ruler of Altea has always been a Paladin." Allura spoke. It was what she didn’t say that creased her brow with determination.
Lance didn't look up from his hands on the table.
They both knew Lance had no interest in ruling. He never had. He enjoyed being the younger prince. It meant he was still allowed to fuck up ever now and again. He was allowed to be goofy and impossibly talkative and take crazy adventures and be besties with the low-born Yellow Paladin. He wouldn't be king after all. He didn't need to act Regal, he just needed to be around.
Allura would be Queen. It was her birth right, she wanted it and Lance was more than elated to let her have it.
"And the future is looking very bleak, Lance." She was wearing that Queenly mask still. "We have to think about the next heir. My rule will be accepted now. But I have to have backing from the Paladins." She meant Black.
Shiro it turned out had been less nameless then they had thought. He was the youngest captain ever in the Altean forces. The men below him were fiercely loyal. The men above him respected him. He was an astounding fighter pilot and a rousing leader. He embodied every aspect of Black. And he was a chess piece the future crown needed on her side.
"If war with the Galra comes," Allure paused. "We have to be ready. And we have to make sure the future doesn't hold any surprises."
They needed a Black Paladin heir. One of the bloodline.
"But why me?" Lance asked.
Allura reached across the table, for the first time her regal manor falling away as she reached for him, placing her hand over his and squeezing. "Lance, baby brother, you know why."
It would be unladylike to say it out loud, but they both knew.
Lance was an Omega. He could life bond with another Alpha. Allura was an Alpha. And so was Shiro, and two Alpha's couldn't life bond. Even if Allura was the one to go through with it. Everyone would know it was a marriage just for show. There would be nothing real holding them together. And Allura couldn't have that.
Lance always knew a side of his sister was ruthless. Beyond ruthless, she was completely merciless. There was a reason they all hadn't questioned her status as the next Black Paladin. Her ambition was matched only by her determination.
And she wanted to rule.
Lance stared back down at this hands. His sisters soft fingers still lay across his own.
He knew how the game of rulers worked. To stay in power, they needed to hold the most pieces of power. And the Black Paladin was a big piece. It was essential in holding military control, popular sway and even reinforced the ideas of Divine choosing.
They needed the Black Paladin locked down on their side.
Lance pulled his hand out from under his sisters.
It stung a bit too much at that moment to know he was being used as another chess piece.
"But I've barely even spoken to him." Lance tried to argue.
Allura brushed it off. “Oh, but Lance he will make such a good suitor!"
Lance couldn't find it in him to care.
"Shiro is so accomplished! And he's only my age. Did you know he was admitted to the academy at fourteen? That's amazing. He graduated top of his class. He was one of the most well marked pilots ever seen and by the night Black chose him he had command of his own ship. Lance, really neither me or father could have ever dreamed to find you a better match."
Still not looking up, Lance wasn't sure what to say. There was another reason, hidden in all those accomplishments.
"You don't care about those things," Lance whispered mostly to himself.
"Lance!" Allura balked as if she was actually offended.
"It's that arm," Lance when on. "The only real accomplishment you care about is his right arm."
That stilled the room.
Finally Allure did speak up. "He knows first hand how much of a threat the Galra are to us."
Lance gave a sigh. "And we need that on our side."
He was sure Allura was staring at him, her eyes baring into him. “Yes, we do, baby brother."
Pressing his lips together, Lance tried another tactic. "There's no way we will ever get along."
"Of course you will." Allura assured. "Historically a union between The Black and Blue Paladin has shown overwhelmingly that your personalities will mesh."
Would they? Lance highly doubted that the goofy, fuck up Paladin and the painstakingly serious one would have any reason to speak, let alone become—bonded.
Lance still didn't look up. "I don't want to."
It was Allura's turn to sigh. "I know. But I stand by what I said. I don't know if we could have ever found a better suitor than this, Lance."
Lance wasn't sure he believed her.
That's why as he smoothed his hand over his face, he used his long fingers to cover his eyes, giving him an excuse not to look at his sister before he nodded.
"Alright." He said quietly.
"Excellent!" His sister exclaimed.
Lance could hear the sound of her clapping her hands together. He didn't even pretend to listen as she launched into all the preparations they would need to get started on right away.
This was the worst day of Lance's entire life.
He was in the most uncomfortable outfit he'd ever had the misfortune of wearing, the stiff regency suit was cut so close, so form fitting, Lance felt as if he could hardly move. He was in head to tow white, even wearing white soft leather boots and crisp white gloves. His coat was embroidered with gold. He wore a golden vest buttoned under it. He was at least thankful for the soft white shirt against his skin under neath it all, but the only splash of color, the striking blue ascot was too tight at his throat.
And he'd just been escorted through the doors, and was now standing before a few hundred people of his father’s court, staring up the freshly cleaned carpet to the enclave of the throne. Except there was no throne now.
Shiro stood there, on the raised dais. He looked massive, with broad shoulders filling out his own black suit. His was much different. It was form fitting material, resembled that more reminiscent of a pilots suit than the stanch material of Lance’s. It was the cape though that struck Lance, making him stop there in the threshold. It was a thick material, and had been draped over one of Shiro's shoulders. It glimmered ever so subtly, like the stars. It was so long it swept around and down the stairs of the dais.
Lance suddenly saw possibly what Allura had seen and feared all along.
Standing there in the enclave, was a man Lance was more then positive could be powerful. He had the support, he now had the power, and without some measure of control on him, he would only need to reach out and snatch the crown from where it hovered over Allura's head.
If nothing else, that jolted Lance into a step forward,
He couldn't let that happen. He whole heartedly supported his sisters rule. Altea would need his sister. And if Lance needed to be the thing standing between his beloved family and the Black Paladin, he'd do it.
The walk was long. Lance could see all the faces of every person he'd possibly ever known staring at him as he tried to calmly walk up the carpet. Moon flower petals had been tossed before his feet as he walked. Their lavender blue delicateness were softly crushed under Lance’s feet.
At the front of the room, to his right, the Paladins were lined up. Hunk was closest to him. Lance stepped up to him first and Hunk gently placed a delicate moon flower wreath over Lance's head, tucking it back from his ears. He tried to smile reassuringly at Lance. Lance for once in his life was too nervous to smile back.
When Lance returned to the white carpet he turned to his left. There his family stood. Foremost was his sister Allura, standing behind her was Lance’s father, the weak but still imposing form of King Alfor.
Allura stepped to Lance without hesitation. She kissed at his cheek and pet his hair away from his face
Lance stared at her, wondering if she was regretting pushing him into this, if she ever would.
But then she was pushing a beautifully black jeweled circlet into Lances hands.
Right, the offering.
That meant it was time--
Lance looked up the stairs of the dais to Shiro. He was smiling down at Lance. He looked at him with soft eyes, before revealing one hand from the cloak, the flesh and bone hand thankfully, and gently beckoned Lance forward.
He went to take a step before a hand touched Lance’s arm. He turned to find his father. His father was twice Lance’s size. A true Alpha Prime. They were nothing alike in any way. But as his father looked down at him, Lance couldn’t help but try his very best to give his father a reassuring smile.
In return, Alfor pulled Lance into a tight but brief hug. He didn’t say anything, but Lance still hugged back. Releasing his son, Alfor grabbed at Lance’s hand one last time and squeezed it before directing him to look back up to the raised dais.
Lance exhaled one last time, slowly hoping he could make it through the bonding that was about to take place with at least a small measure of grace.
And with that, he mounted the dais and strode towards the Black Paladin.
When Shiro ducked and Lance slipped the black jeweled circlet on to his head, he shifted closer to Lance, eyes never leaving his own.
"You accept?" The acolyte asked, stepping forward.
Shiro's smile was impossibly sincere this close and he gave a short nod. "Absolutely."
Lance's eyes shot down to the floor the second he was released from Shiro's gaze.
The acolyte stepped forward then, sliding his hand down Lances back, "Then his highness is now ready to bond."
The touch was meant to slide down Lances spine, activating the Omega glands lining his vertebrae. Lance stepped forward though, squirming from the foreign touch, glancing back behind him at the invasion of his space. He didn't like it. It didn't soothe him like some textbooks may claim. If that was because of his nerves or a different reason, Lance wasn't sure. But he knew he didn't want the acolyte touching him again.
There was just something about it...
It wasn't till he felt Shiro's hands at his arms, tugging him closer that Lance realized that he had inadvertently stepped into Shiro's personal space.
Lance felt like he might shake apart as he finally looked up at the newly christened Black Paladin.
Fierceness, bravery, leadership--qualities of a Black. Lance almost audibly gulped as his mind raced around the concept. Did he want all that in a mate? His gut reaction was no, he didn't. He never ever expected to be life bonded. He thought he'd more then likely find another Omega, one that was gentle and kind and pretty. He'd always imagined himself bonding--a regular one, without all the eternal consequences of a life bond--to a cute girl, one that giggled when he looked at her, one that would blush as she looked at him, shorter than him and possibly adored Lance’s dorky nature. It was easier with your own second gender after all. It didn't require all the fuss. It was easy understanding the other and their motives. Not like trying to understand the works of an Alpha. God, talk about impossibly frustrating--
Shiro smiled again, and tried to coax Lance closer.
Of course. Lance wasn't standing in the enclave of the royal throne room with a cute omega by his side. No. He was standing with an Alpha, about to enter into an unbeatable bond with an Alpha. About to hand over every thing to a man he'd only shared a few moments of small talk with.
Lance looked away, trying to get himself to calm. He could have a mental breakdown later. Right now, he was surrounded by everyone he'd ever met and they were all eyes on him.
“Come closer?” Shiro hummed into Lance's ear.
Shiro stepped back and sat on a stool placed there for him.
It was starting.
Shiro was tugging Lance forward--
Oh god, it was starting. He'd pull Lance closer to him in just a moment.
Alphas were never gentle with it. Lance was a fucking Prince after all, he'd watched these things, he knew. He'd seen Omegas whine and struggle and sometimes--sometimes scream.
Lance’s hands shakily went to his face, trying to cover the evidence of the panic now pounding through his veins. He didn't know if he could do this. He didn't know if he could let everyone watch as he went through it.
"Shhhhh," Shiro's cooed to him, this time his hand came around Lance's waist as he tugged him closer, pulling him against Shiro's chest.
Lance realized he was gasping for air as Shiro tried to guide him to sit on his knee.
"No." Lance finally managed.
Was that—Lance pulled his hands away. They still shook, but even more--Lance let out a sob realizing he was already crying. His hands pulled in, arms flattening at the sides of his rib cage, trying to protect himself.
He pivoted, turning his back to the crowd before another sob started to shake though him, trembling though his shoulders.
Shiro more than accommodated. His arm loosened, letting Lance switch his position before with a swift tug he scouted Lance in to his knee and pulled him flush into his chest.
"Shhhh, it's alright," Shiro tried again.
"No," Lance curled in, hunching his shoulders. "I don't wanna do this."
Shiro nodded. His eyes flicked to the crowd beyond them. "I know." He murmured to Lance. His face was very close, voice low, only meant for the two of them. "I would have preferred to do this privately."
That wasn't what Lance had meant. He didn't want any of this. He had never wanted Shiro, he doubted he ever would. His hands balled into fists as Lance hunched more, his eyes squeezing shut.
There was a whoosh, and a rush of air before Lance felt something settling around him. He opened his eyes just enough to realize Shiro had the inky black cloak now encasing Lance as well. Lance looked down at the magical fabric. It was even more brilliant up close. It was eons and eons of galaxies all at his finger tips.
And then there was Shiro, his arms winding under the cloak, coaxing Lance closer, setting him up on his knee a bit more stable.
Lance crammed his eyes closed again.
"It's alright." Shiro was at his ear. Lance could feel his breath against his hair.
"I promise you," Shiro's voice was deep, deep enough it rumbled through Lances bones. "It will never be like this again between us. I'm so sorry, this wasn't my choice. I will never put you through this humiliation again."
That was—Lance stiffened. He hadn't expected that.
Suddenly though, Shiro's hand was in Lance's hair. It was petting through Lance’s soft short cut. When he lifted the moonflower wreath from Lance’s head, it was so easily Lance barely noticed.
Lance didn't open his eyes as he heard the rustle of clothing and the shuffle of footsteps. Shiro was handing the wreath off to an acolyte.
That was the sign. They were about to begin. Lance felt himself shiver. He was having a hard time breathing again. He curled farther in, squeezing his eyes so tightly shut. He didn't want this. He so badly didn't want this.
A thought sparked. He still had time, he could run. He could spring away from Shiro right now and run for it.
But then a warm hand was cradling Lances neck and the back of his head.
The whine was involuntary. But Shiro responded by nosing along Lanced cheek bone.
"You're alright." Shiro assured in the softest of whisper. "I'll be as quick as I can."
Lance knew he should acknowledge but he couldn't. He was so--scared, for the first time in his entire life he was so ridiculously scared.
"Left or right?" Shiro asked.
Lance tried to process the question. His mind was racing too fast to process. Did it matter? Who would really care? Why did Shiro care?
"I--" Lance tried to answer. "Uh--left." His left side was already pressed to Shiro. He wouldn't have to turn. Lance couldn't turn. He couldn't witness his family standing there, letting this happen to him--
Lance gasped. Shiro had shifted the hand at his neck and long fingers were now rubbing gentle circles to the secondary glands at the base of Lances skull. It was instinctual that Lance leaned his head back into the touch. His mouth dropped open as he felt the hormones flood his blood stream.
His head tipped farther back, his neck arching as he pressed into Shiro's hand.
"That's it," Shiro's mouth was at Lances throat. "Relax into it. Let yourself open up to me."
Lance gave a shaky breath as his head rest back into Shiro's hand. He kept up the slow but soothing massage at the base of Lances skull.
He'd never been touched there, he was a prince after all. He was never really touched anywhere, no matter what his second gender was. He'd heard others whispering about it, how good it felt to have Omega glands stimulated. Lance’s mouth dropped open as he gulped in air. They were all so very right. It felt fucking amazing.
And foggy. He was floating and--
There was a hand at Lance's ascot. It was tugging and pulling and untangling before it was loosened. Lance hummed as the delicate fabric was pulled away and passed off to another acolyte. Shiro didn't stop there though. His fingers plucked at the buttons of Lance's shirt. One, two, at the third Shiro tugged the fabric away, before his fingers traced a delicate line up form Lances now exposed hollow of his throat all the way up over his Adam's apple and ending with a gentle swipe against his chin.
Lance was trembling with the sensation. His whole body felt like it was pulsing hot lava through his veins. Every nerve ending was lit and at attention.
With his neck now exposed, Shiro nosed in just at the underside of Lances jaw. The action sent a thrill through his veins.
Another wave of hormones flooded into Lance.
Those were his primary glands. Tucked just under his jaw line.
It felt--amazing. Like the ones at the back of his head, only twice the impact, twice the sensitivity, he could feel Shiro's every breath against his neck suddenly. When Shiro brushed against Lances glands again— a gasp shuddered out of Lance.
Wow, that felt so good.
Shiro shifted, pressing into Lance as he tipped his head and his mouth moved over Lance’s throat.
Lance felt drunk on the movement.
Then there was something wet moving against Lance's gland. And Shiro's mouth was covering it and suckling.
Oh wow—Lance shivered. He knew his primary glands were swelling, he could feel the spiked sensitivity, it was just so—Lance whined, turning into Shiro as much as he could.
One of his hands worked their way out of the cloak and grasped at Shiro's uniform. His fingers curling in the fabric.
He tried to duck his head, to turn his face into Shiro, to try and press his face into him maybe—
But suddenly Shiro's grip on the back of his neck changed. He was no longer massaging circles into Lance’s glands, no he was gripping Lance’s neck tight, holding him still.
Lance’s eyes opened. It was just feeling so good, why would Shiro—?
It happened in a split second. Shiro was suckling, nibbling at the swollen gland, laving it with his tongue and kissing at Lance’s neck and then--
Lance gasped this time aloud and his eyes shot wide.
Shiro sunk his teeth in fast and hard.
The heightened sensitivity was now spiked with horrible pain. It speared through him. Lance arched and gasped again.
Shiro wasn't letting go, if anything his grip tightened on Lance's neck and his hand came up to lay over Lances thighs.
"Shiro," Lance gasped. His fingers flew to Shiro's uniform this time digging in with force as he tried to blink past the pain. He tried to let him know, let the Alpha know. He was hurting. It hurt so bad and he didn't want it--
Shiro let up a little, a slick sickening wet sound accompanying the action.
Lance breathed in relief. It was over. His Alpha would stop now.
Lance relaxed back into Shiro's arms.
Shiro was pulling in a gulp of a breath before he clamped his mouth back down on Lances neck.
This time Lance couldn't stop the yowl of pain and he bucked as he felt like he was impaled again. Something liquid and warm ran down Lance’s neck. His hands fought like mad, tearing into Shiro and his legs tried to kick up.
He was stopped swiftly as Shiro forced the hand at his thighs down, and trapped Lance there against him.
Lance gasped for gulps of air. It was so much worse this time. He whined and whimpered as he started to feel the blood trickling more vivid trails down his neck. Oh god, it hurt it hurt it hurt.
He was feeling dizzy. He opened his mouth to pull in air. It seemed so thin. He squeezed his eyes shut as pain spiked again. His eyes were tearing up from it.
It was like a fucking jackhammer to his nerves, he felt like he was being drilled into, like he was being ripped into.
God it was so horrible. The world was spinning and Lance felt so alone and his fingers, his deft fingers clawed at the Alpha over him. How could he do this?
It felt like Shiro was clawing his way and burrowing into Lance's very soul. It felt horrible. It was like lightening searing through him.
God he couldn’t—his mouth gaped for breath, a half cry dying on his lips.
He knew he was crying again but he couldn't stop. His suit coat was soaked in the blood, that lovely soft white shirt underneath destroyed.
Lance finally let go, sagging into Shiro and—was gone.
He didn't recognize the canopy over head. Lance’s canopy was blue. A deep royal blue like every thing in his room.
Blinking, Lance shifted in the crisp sheets and immediately stopped.
Every bone, every muscle and every tip of him surged with a dull ache. Memory rushed back to him as he lay there, frozen.
Right. Of course this wasn't anything he recognized, Lance wasn't sleeping in his own room anymore. He may never be again.
"They're calling you weak!" A voice suddenly hissed.
Lance immediately let himself rest back into the pillows, flicking his eyes closed to feign sleep again.
It was distant, but Lance heard the shuffled footsteps entering the quarters, the click of the double doors behind them. Whom ever had entered, they weren't in the main bedroom, only in the sitting room just before.
Lance had no double Shiro probably had a couple other adjoining rooms as well. Lance's own quarters had had a master bathroom and a small parlor for entertaining attached.
"What did you expect of me?"
That voice. Lance involuntarily let out a breath as that deep voice vibrated through him. He'd know it anywhere now. He would be able to pinpoint it across a vast crowd. It thumbed through his bones, and wrapped around his senses, pounding in his ears. It was Shiro.
Right, so that was what a bond felt like. Lance closed his mouth and tried to relax back into the sheets.
"A ceremony that was supposed to take ten minutes took close to an hour and a half!" This was the first voice. The displeasure was manifest in the way he growled every word.
Lance knew that voice. Or at least he thought he did. It was familiar. He just couldn't quite place it. He knew he'd heard it before.
"I wasn't going to just rip his throat out." Shiro argued back.
"Why? Every other Alpha would have!"
Lance almost let a gasp slip as it dawned on him. That voice was Rax. He was the brother of Hunks girlfriend. Lance had only met him once. He was an emissary here for the Balmera.
"He's still the Blue Paladin and a Prince to this nation." Shiro again. "I wasn't going to force him the entire way."
"Your common courtesy just started enough rumors flying to wreak everything we've built."
Even from the next room, Lance could feel the uncomfortableness of the silence.
There was the shuffle of footsteps again before Rax spoke. "Forgive me. But you have to realize, you can't be so concerned with--"
"He's half the influential power here." Shiro's voice dipped into that Alpha tone, prompting a shiver from Lance. "I wasn't going to start out a monster to him. And don't worry about anything they say, the act was seen as merciful from Alteans, and that's the only opinion I'm worried about right now."
Trying to get a look, Lance tried to discreetly tip his head--
Pain shot through him like a bolt and Lance let out a groan. His hand shot up to his jaw as his eyes squeezed shut in an expression of anguish.
He realized then there was a large bandage at the side of his neck, taped across his left side and up under his jaw, gauze and a bandage secured tight over his now ripped open gland.
There was shuffling in the next room, a set of foot steps coming closer to the entryway of the bedroom.
Quietly, Lance heard Rax dismiss himself, "I'll take my leave."
Shiro must have given some nonverbal conformation, because in the next second there was the sound of a door opening, footsteps and then the door clicking shut.
The bed next to him dipped and Lance was suddenly assaulted with the smell of--Alpha. Lance breathed it in. It wasn't what he'd ever expected. Shiro's scent was fine tuned to Lance now and Lance could pick every part of it up. It was so wonderful. It was a cool scent like swaying pine trees and rich roasted black coffee, small hint of cloves and cardamom.
He liked it. A lot.
"Let me see," Shiro was leaning over Lance.
Then his fingers were touching him. Lance almost stopped breathing again. Oh, he enjoyed that. He wanted to tangle his fingers with Shiro's. He was allowed to do that right? He could do what ever he wanted with Shiro now. That was the point of a life bond.
"Lance," the deep tone brought Lance back to the surface and he cracked his eyes open.
Shiro's expressionless face struck Lance at that moment. He'd never particularly thought of Shiro as handsome. The shock of white forelock and scar he knew was a topic among a lot of people, mentioning how rugged he looked, how dashingly brave it made him appear, but Lance had never cared for it. Well, at least till now.